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Suggestions for a College

  1. Sep 23, 2008 #1
    I am a senior in high school in the US currently looking for the right college(s) to apply to. I am looking to major in physics and I am currently thinking about going to graduate school afterwards to get a PhD in physics, although this may change.
    I am looking for a school that will be prestigious enough for me to get into a good graduate school, but not one that will leave me with no free time. A list of traits that I would like it to have (although I know it probably won't have all of them) would be: small to medium size, at least moderately prestigious, close to or in the South-East US, allows for a healthy social life, and allows for regular contact with professors. Any and all recommendations, suggestions, and comments are welcome.
    If it helps at all, the related courses I am currently taking are AP Calculus AB, AP Physics C (Mechanics), and AP Chemistry.
  2. jcsd
  3. Sep 23, 2008 #2


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    Staff: Mentor

    The prestige of your undergraduate school has little if any bearing on graduate-school admissions. What counts is what you do, and how well you take advantage of whatever opportunities your school gives you.

    As for smaller schools in the Southeast, two that I'm acquainted with are Furman and Davidson.
  4. Sep 26, 2008 #3
    I attend North Carolina State University. I think this may good be a good option for you to. A little over 2 hrs from the coast. Big enough school to have a good athletic program and student body life. One of the great things about the physics department here is the size. There are enough courses to get the full undegrad curriculum needed and some grad classes. All of my undegrad classes were around 30 people. You can know the professors pretty well. The graduate program here is growing, but as an undergrad you can take advantage of this. Doing research during your undergrad is very possible and I highly recommend it.

    If you would like to know more shoot me an email; tbradshaw@webassign.net
  5. Sep 26, 2008 #4


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    Your best bet is probably a liberal arts college, like Williams, Swarthmore, Reed or Rice. At these colleges, you don't have to compete with graduate students for time or research with professors, and they are fairly prestigious (although that doesn't make a huge difference when applying to grad schools). Spend your summers doing REU projects at other universities or national labs to get more exposure and valuable research experience - and maybe a publication or conference poster.
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